Note: The Department of Music is currently not accepting applications for the following degrees/specializations for Fall 2018: Choral Conducting DMA (we are accepting applications for Choral Conducting MM) and Collaborative Piano.

The Department of Music accepts applications for the fall quarter only. Admission to the department is based on acceptance by the UCLA Graduate Division and a faculty review of the applicant's work. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree from an acceptable institution, with a minimum GPA of 3.0 for the last two years of upper division coursework.

A major in music is not required as long as the applicant has the necessary background and musicianship to pursue graduate study. While the audition carries the most weight, the entire dossier is evaluated in making admission decisions. For further information on other requirements as well as general information on the UCLA Graduate Program in Music, the applicant should refer to Program Requirements for UCLA Graduate Degrees.

NOTE:  Applicants for the MM in Jazz Performance must apply directly to the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Performance.  Students who are selected for admission to the Monk Institute will receive instructions for enrolling at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.


The application includes the following components:

  • Unofficial transcripts: Upload unofficial copies of transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended.  Community college transcripts are not necessary, as the coursework will be reflected on the undergraduate transcript.
  • Statement of Purpose: A statement discussing your reasons for applying to this program and your academic and musical goals.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Enter the names and contact information of three recommenders and send them electronic recommendation requests within the online application.
  • Writing Sample (DMA applicants only): Provide a scholarly/research paper on a subject in the field of music of a level of intellectual and critical engagement appropriate to graduate level work.
  • Pre-Screening: Applicants to the Strings, Voice, Piano, and Conducting areas are required to submit pre-screening audition recordings as part of the online application.  Please see Pre-Screening Information for detailed instructions about pre-screening material requirements.

In addition to the unofficial transcripts included in the online application, applicants must submit official transcripts as part of their application.  Please request an official transcript be sent from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended either electronically to Zoe Ashmead, Director of Enrollment and Recruitment, at or by mail to  

Graduate Admissions - Music
2520 Schoenberg Music Building
445 Charles Young Drive East
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1616


Those applicants who advance beyond the pre-screening round and those in areas that do not require pre-screening will be invited to UCLA to audition for department faculty.  See the following links for information about on-campus auditions. Unless otherwise stated, the listed repertoire requirements and recommendations apply to both pre-screening and final auditions. 

Audition Dates 

Repertoire Requirements

The Music Department will accept a video audition from an applicant to the MM degree; however, please bear in mind that you can always present yourself better live than in a recording. For the DMA, the department strongly prefer that you audition in person. To request an exception to this, you must your request to the department at least one month before the audition date.

Writing Assessment: As part of the on-campus audition, MM Voice applicants and all DMA applicants will be asked to spend 30-45 minutes writing an extemporaneous essay on an extremely general musical topic. The assessment requires no advance preparation and is designed to serve as an additional measure of your writing skills.

International Applicants

Academic Records: Please see the Graduate Division website for information about the official academic records you are required to submit with your application.

English Language Requirements: All applicants are required to demonstrate English language proficiency in order to be eligible for admission.  Proficiency can be demonstrated in two ways:

1) Holding a bachelor's or higher degree from a university located in the United States or in another country in which English is the primary spoken language of daily life (e.g., Australia, Barbados, Canada, Ireland, Jamaica, New Zealand, United Kingdom) and the medium of instruction


2) Submitting scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

If admitted, applicants may also be required to confirm their English language proficiency upon arrival.  Please see the Graduate Division website for more information.


Music Graduate Admissions Frequently Asked Questions

Orchestral Conducting: FAQ for Orchestral Conducting

Wind Conducting: FAQ for Wind Conducting

Choral Conducting: Please contact James Bass, Director of Choral Studies

The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music offers graduate degrees in three different departments.
For applicants interested in degree programs in Ethnomusicology or Musicology, please visit
the department website for admissions information.